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Wednesday, 10 June 2009

The Glebe in Ireland-Episode 3-Cuilcagh

This will conclude this series of blogs,since i'm now blogging on the 'Stena Caledonia' en route back to Scotland.
There will be supplementary blogs to follow in future.

Tuesday the ninth of June,and i'm meeting up with some of my Irish family.
We're climbing up to the 'Monument' atop Cuilcagh(Binn Chuilceach) Mountain,which is also the border between Cavan and Fermanagh.
There are eight of us as we meet at the original family homestead.

It's a fair climb as some older and younger find it heavy going(me for one),while some older and younger are like gazelles.I've climbed up here many times,but today i made a mistake.I misread an outcrop,and decided the others were wrong.I took the two youngest of the group with me.Sorry guys,but at least you can say you took the most difficult route.I can only blame the alcohol-I'm not used to it anymore.

But we're all soon reunited above 'The Green Stripe',and pictures can be taken.

Now on the rocky plateau that gives Cuilcagh that unique 'Moonscape' look about it.Commis Loch far below makes an interesting backdrop.

The views up here are magnificent.Only a few years ago,it was only the shepherds and smugglers who'd climb Cuilcagh.It's now become so popular with walkers,there was a record group of 150 climbed up last weekend.

Finally we reach the Cairn and Trig Point.The trig point dates from the early 50's,and initials carved in the stone are those of family members who helped erect it.

In decent lighting conditions,i've pinpointed 9 counties from up here.I have it on good authority that thirteen counties have been seen.

It's known that Squire Jonathan Swift started to write Gullivers Travels in Cuilcagh House in County Cavan.It's rumoured that some of his ideas for the Lilliputians came from looking at the wee folk below him as he climbed the Cuilcagh mountains.

Refreshments at the summit...

...are followed by photo calls,including ten second delayed shots to get us all in.That guy in the bright red stands out like a sore thumb.

All good things must come to an end though,and we descend by the easier 'Busen' route.
The forecasted showers have failed to materialize,and the weather and views remain beautiful.I make up for my earlier mistake with a successful little shortcut right at the end of the walk.
Back at the old homestead,a can of liquid refreshment and a clean up...

...then into the cars for a couple more interesting stops,before making a social call at the traditional watering hole...

...where Jessica D,the noted artistic photographer in our group,borrows my camera for this excellent group of pictures.
It's been a great day.

Footnote: the late arrival of this blog is due to Stena cutting off my Wi-Fi without warning.

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